Equifax's $700 million data breach settlement spurs criticism, calls for new rules


WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Credit-reporting company Equifax Inc (EFX.N) will pay up to $700 million to settle claims it broke the law with a massive 2017 data breach and to repay harmed consumers, in a landmark settlement that could spur new consumer data rules.

The largest-ever settlement for a data breach draws to a close multiple probes into Equifax by the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and nearly all state attorneys general. It also resolves pending class-action lawsuits against the company.

Shares in Equifax, which is one of three major credit reporting companies, were up 0.8 percent in late trading on Monday.

Roughly 147 million people had information, including Social Security numbers and driver’s license data, compromised by the breach, one of the largest in history. The hackers have never been identified.

While Equifax said on Monday it saw no evidence the stolen information had been used in identity thefts, regulators said the…

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